When Michigan resident Bimla Nayyar was admitted by her concerned family in 2012 for dislocating her jaw after a fall at a Dearborn hospital, little did they know that a routine surgery would lead to the woman’s death? The 81 year old grandmother of Indian origin who was wheeled into the operation room for jaw surgery was operated on her brain leading to her untimely death that resulted from complications arising out of the brain surgery. Apparently the medical staff at Oakwood Hospital and Medical Center had mixed up the X-ray reports of Bimla Nayyar with another patient that was admitted for a bleeding brain.
When doctors opened up her skull to search for a non-existing bleeding brain, the prodding led to complications which kept the patient confined to the hospital for two months before her death. Though the family filed a case of medical negligence and a jury in 2015 awarded a staggering amount of $20 million to them, apparently they cannot collect a penny of it from the hospital due to an error by their lawyers. The Michigan Supreme Court stated that the lawyers fighting Nayyar’s case had argued that the death was due to medical negligence that allows plaintiffs to claim for any amount.
A lower court had earlier debarred the lawyers from pursuing any medical negligence claim for the case so the lawyers should have argued for medical malpractice that would have given the family some compensation even if it would have been a capped limit. As the lawyers continued to plead for negligence instead of medical malpractice the previous award was void. Justice Markman stated that the case was a dereliction of duty by both medical and legal team which has led to miscarriage of justice of a case that should rightly have been compensated.